Brazil has earmarked 3 billion Brazilian reais (US$ 1.5 billion) for investment in works turned to the Soccer World Cup 2014, and intends to release a package of works, entitled the World Cup PAC (Portuguese acronym for Growth Acceleration Program).
According to the Brazilian minister of Cities, Márcio Fortes, the bulk of funds should go to works pertaining to the world soccer championship, but the total figure will only be defined after a meeting with representatives of the municipalities that will host the matches.
The cities hosting the soccer extravaganza will be Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Brasília, Belo Horizonte, Cuiabá, Curitiba, Fortaleza, Manaus, Natal, Porto Alegre, Recife e Salvador.
"This is only an initial figure. We have not set a figure yet. These 3 billion reais will allow us to take the first step. The total value of projects is not known yet. We are going to hold talks with mayors to learn which projects are priorities," said the minister.
The funds will be supplied by Pró-Transporte, a financing program funded by the Severance Pay Indemnity Fund (FGTS) whose regulation was passed last year by the fund's Board of Curators.
According to Fortes, several city halls have already contacted the ministry and showed interest in partnership for carrying out infrastructure work turned exclusively to the Cup that will be held in Brazil.
"For some time now, the city halls that will host the matches have been contacting us. The city halls have had meetings with the Fifa [International Football Federation] and several projects were outlined. Our approach consists of dealing only with projects exclusively turned to the Cup. Our goal right now is not to solve transport-related issues in the city. We are going to help solve the issues pertaining to the events," he stated.
According to the minister, another factor to be analyzed by the Ministry of Cities is usefulness and sustainability of the investment after the competition is over. "We are not going to deal with huge projects. The cheapest and most efficient means of transport will be used. Of course, each case will be analyzed separately," he explained.
Fortes stated that the PAC of the Cup is going to include partnerships with city halls and state governments, as well as some partnerships with the private sector.
"The keyword is partnership. The federal government will not undertake anything by itself. It will be similar to the infrastructure PAC, in which we already have partnerships with city halls and state governments, as well as public-private partnerships. We are going to review the type of investment proposed, analyze their size, and the need for private sector participation, which may take place in different ways. The private sector may build and then lease the assets, or perhaps operate them. All of that will be discussed," he stated.
The minister also informed that preparations for the World Cup already include the creation of a line of financing, with funds from the FGTS, for renewing the bus fleet across the country, a decision made approximately two months ago. The line will be made available by the Brazilian Federal Savings Bank with total funds of 1 billion reais (US$ 525 million).
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